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*PHOTOS taken at The Spark A Dream Annual Gala October 22nd, 2015 at Tiato

Written By: Marcelle - Oct• 27•15

Award-winning Devious Maids / Scrubs actress Judy Reyes host of the Spark A Dream Gala

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*PHOTOS taken at The Spark A Dream Annual Gala October 22nd, 2015 at Tiato

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Spark A Dream is a non-profit organization serving San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia Middle Schools. The concern provides one-on-one mentoring, as well group projects for 7th and 8th grade underserved students. Spark aims to prepare and re-engage the pupils for High School. The organization was founded in 2004 by educators Chris Balme and Melia Dicker.

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The Spark A Dream Annual Gala took place Thursday evening on October 22nd, 2015 at Tiato, a lovely Asian Fusion eatery in Santa Monica. The event showcased a jazz quintet of very young looking musicians who may have been high school students, a silent auction, the step and repeat red carpet, hors d’oeuvres, drinks and later an Asian fusion buffet.

Actress Judy Reyes, renowned for her character Zoila Diaz in “Devious Maids” among many other TV shows, including “Scrubs” hosted the event. Brenda Pensamiento, Principal of Clinton Middle School, was welcomed by Judy and recognized for her outstanding work with Spark LA. Other luminaries included Edy Ganem also of “Devious Maids” and Milena Govich featured in “Law and Order.” Judy proclaimed that mentors are often a necessity for youngsters. She went on to explain that she had a wonderful mentor who encouraged and challenged her when she attended Middle School in the Bronx – a Mr. Abbott. Toward the end of her speech, the same Mr. Abbott walked up to the stage to greet Judy, his former star student, much to her surprise and amazement.

The fundraiser gala easily reached the goal of $50, 000 that night. Sponsors for Spark A Dream include Hulu, Capital Group, Warner Brothers, HBO, Deloitte, The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, Sony, NBC, Cornerstone on Demand, BTIG, Johnny Carson Foundation, Abramson Teiger, Howard CDM, Woods + Dangaran, Hosa Technology. Last night’s Spark LA’s  ‘Spark LA Dream’ Gala was an evening of music, magic and mentor celebration which raised funds for the life-changing student mentorship program. Spark LA pairs 350 underserved middle school students (7th & 8th graders) with the city’s top companies including the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Entravision, Google, Union Bank, Capital Group and Cornerstone OnDemand for one-on-one mentorships in the workplace. 

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 Entourage Actor Jordan Belfi with Actress & Writer Rachelle DiMaria at the Spark a Dream Gala
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 Spark LA Student Fatima Martinez of Camino Nuevo Charter Academy with her mentor, Mike Rocco, Hulu, manager of internal communications 
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 American Ultra Director Max Landis Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Cinematographer Joe di Gennaro with Spark students 
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